For those of you who roleplay or wish to know the faction story from UO history and lore, here is the excerpt from the official Ultima Online website:
"When Minax took over Lord British’s realm, she started a rift, both
among her followers, and among the followers of Lord British. Both
sides split into two different groups, with different ideals, and war
ensued among all 4 sides.
The rebellion began in Moonglow, where the council of Mages decided
that Lord British was no longer fit to rule Britannia. He’d not only
failed to protect his lands from the invading hordes, but many of his
own people had abandoned him and fled to the side of darkness, taking
post with one of the factions of evil.
British’s loyal followers tried to crush the rumors quickly that
Moonglow was planning on seceding from the throne’s grasp, but this
only furthered their cause, making those who died or were jailed
martyrs for the cause of the mages. The Council of Mages now believes
that what Britannia needs is a new leader: one who can not only lead
Britannia against Minax, but who can also keep peace once it’s
restored. To this end, they have begun preparations to do something
Though they’ve never had to do this themselves, they are the keepers of
the arcane knowledge, and they have prepared many notes and items which
they will need in their quest. They oppose Minax, and Lord British, and
as such, are not safe from danger in either company.
Meanwhile, Minax has something of a rebellion herself occurring.
Strangely enough, from within her own rank and file, there are those
who are calling for the Shadow Lords to be released from the Abyss to
take their rightful place as the rulers of the dark land. While her
minions are grateful to Minax for allowing them the opportunity to
strike terror at Lord British, they feel she is only useful as a
magical tool, and is not powerful enough to lead them against Lord
British for an extended period of time. To this end they have begun
preparations to do something drastic of their own; call for the Shadow
Her minions are now split amongst those who would follow her, and those
who wish to see her dethroned. Infighting is the only thing thus far
that is keeping Minax from working out a way to breach the virtue spell
that protects Lord British and his followers."